As sad as I am to see Borders go, I can’t say that I’m surprised.
Once upon a time, I was a book-buying fool. Every book that I wanted to read, I bought. It was an expensive habit, but since I’ve never spent a ton on things like shoes and purses, I never felt that bad about it.
But then I had a kid and lost all my money. Seriously, those things are expensive!
So, over the past few years, I’ve sparingly bought books. My threshold is — will this be a book I’ll want to read again someday? Twilight saga? Yes. The latest Emily Giffin novel? Probably not.
Shortly after having E. I started hitting up the library regularly. In case you haven’t been to one since high school, they’re amazing. They just give you books … for free! No seriously. This is not an urban legend.
The Orange County Library System rocks in so many ways. They offer free home delivery of books that you order online — like Netflix, but again, FREE! I can’t tell you how many times I used this service during E’s first year and I was terrified to go anywhere alone because I just knew that she’d scream, poop or vomit everywhere (and often all three). So you’re welcome librarygoers.
The library also has DVDs and CDs, and great storytimes for kids. And I just learned last week that they have a new service called Freegal, which gives you 3 free music downloads a week! (Thanks for the tip Pulse of Central Florida!)
Over the past couple months, I’ve been cheating on the library. My parents got me a Kindle for Christmas. At first, I thought, “Oh, I’ll never use this.” But then a little thing called “The Hunger Games” happened to me. One minute, I’m reading the hard copy of book 1. The next thing I know, it’s 12:30 a.m. on a schoolnight and I’m downloading Book 2 on my Kindle because I’m too impatient to find out what happens after Katniss and Peeta get off the train!
And I’m not going to lie — a Kindle is seductive. It’s so easy and the books are a lot cheaper than hard copies. Besides, it makes a great, lightweight travel companion.
It’s also so convenient. We discovered that through the Kindle app, my husband and I can share books that I download to the Kindle on our other devices (iPhone, computer, etc). But, for the most part, we don’t have a lot of reading overlap. For some reason, I still can’t talk him into reading the latest YA books. His loss.
The library does offer some e-book downloads, but to be honest, I haven’t been able to find any I want to read yet. That part of their site could use some work. It’s a bit unwieldy to browse and search for e-book titles.
Since this was an expensive spring with my Kindle, I re-dedicated myself to the library. First, I had to pay off some pesky fines that accrued when someone (*cough*DadJovi*cough*) misplaced one of the kids’ CDs we’d checked out for E. (Side note: it wasn’t bad enough that she picked some bizarro cover version of Disney songs by Los Lobos. No, I had to pay $20 for a CD we all hated).
Over the past couple weeks, E. has been picking out all the books about snakes, ballerinas and gorillas she can find.
And I’ve been working my way through the fiction section. Now I just need some suggestions! I’ve been browsing Eat Live Run‘s book list (that girl does a lot of reading) for new titles.
Last week I read “Gap Creek” based on her suggestion, and sadly, I don’t share her love for it. But this week, I picked this one up:
I’m only 50 pages into it and I’m really liking it so far.
So, please tell me, what books have you read lately? I probably should read more non-fiction but I just love novels and have a harder time getting into non-fiction. And how do you pick new books? I need a better system than just picking books based on their cover (I’m such a cliche — but I challenge you to pick out a book at the library while you’re trying to stop your 3-year-old from making BFFs with every homeless man there).
How do you read? E-reader? Store-bought books? Library? Or over strangers’ shoulders?
I used to love real books, but now I’m all about the Kindle. It’s so easy and convenient.
Dang Hunger Games! I’m on #3 and it’s freaking killing me!
I’m a little jealous. I wish I was still reading HG for the first time! I think I’m going to re-read the series before the movies are released. If you want to have a post-Hunger Games drink to fully discuss the series, let me know and I’ll meet you up on the Drive!
Michelle @ Crazy*Running*Legs says
I love books like they are my best friend, but then I bought a Nook and well, now I love books on my Nook like they are my best friend.
I have yet to borrow eBooks from the library because I haven’t found anything I want to read. I also have a tendency to steal library books (accidentally) so I try to steal clear, although I really should start checking books out for the kids!! (<—slacker mom)
I just finished Rob Lowe's book and "eh." Now I'm looking for my next read….
I need to hear about this book larceny. Did they send Bookman on your case (you’ll catch that if you’re a Seinfeld fan).
Bummer about Rob Lowe’s book. That’s been on my list since seeing him on Oprah. Well, I’m only a few chapters into it, but as I said above, I’m really liking Winter Garden so far! I’m also going to check out all the YA books Tena mentions in the comments here! Hadn’t heard of any of them!
And I go to the library so often w/ E because I get so bored of all her books at home. She gets in bad habits where she only wants to read the same stupid Beauty and the Beast book over and over again. I hide books of hers that I hate (hmmm, sounds like a blog post there!).
I’m a middle school teacher, and yes it’s my job, but… there are some REALLY great young adult books out right now. Hunger Games gave you a taste of how young adult fiction has changed since the days where Judy Blume was basically it. Some titles I’m currently obsessed with are: When You Reach Me, Okay For Now, and Moon Over Manifest. They’ll read quickly, and I think they’re pretty terrific. Oh, and if you haven’t read the Grandma Dowdel books of A Long Way from Chicago and A Year Down Yonder, they’re two of my all-time favorites. 🙂
Tena, thank you for all the great suggestions! I have not heard of any of these books so I’m adding them to my list now! Can’t wait to read them!
And you must be a great teacher! I love when teachers are just as excited about the materials as the kids. I hope my daughter is lucky enough to get someone like you someday!
P.S. I can’t live without my Kindle. I still get to buy “real” books when I stock my classroom though, so I get the best of both worlds.
Vinobaby (Kerry) says
I absolutely LOVE the library. I go once a week to keep up with all the titles my Hubby & I put on hold. Seminole County is a much smaller system than Orange: no DVDs, music, or classes (Orange has some amazing & free computer classes). I have Winter Garden sitting in my nightstand–I won a copy months ago and haven’t had time to start it. Glad to hear it’s good though.
I checked out some E-readers at Best Buy yesterday. Not ready to make the leap yet, but I know I will have to eventually.
I hopefully will finish Mary Kay Andrew’s Summer Rental tonight. Cute summer read. Just finished Slippery Tipples (review coming soon on BookshelfBombshells.com).
Too many books and far too little time!
Caroline Calcote says
You know we love the library! But I must admit we use it mostly for kids books. I just haven’t been reading much lately, although I go through phases where I read voraciously. I just read all The Hunger Games books a couple of weeks ago. All three in two days. Cal is starting the first one on our upcoming vacation. He’s going to love them. I’m jealous of your Kindle! I want one.